Friday, April 29, 2011

My interesting walk today

I decided to walk to Target today. It was an interesting walk. Target is perhaps two miles from where I started. First mistake....should have not succumbed to the temptation to wear sandals. They were fine till the return trip but...bandaids will be my future accessory for awhile.

On the way there I saw a mailman with a new spring in his step who cheerfully greeted me and we laughed giddily about the sunshine. The spring flowers and trees were everywhere and I coveted every one of them for my yard. I personally think city dwellers should not plant flowering trees or flowers themselves without botanical species labels. How do I know what to look for at my favorite garden center???? (Vites is awesome). There was a young boy about tenish on a bus bench who looked at me understandingly when the sidewalk ran out. I didn't feel like crossing the street so stayed in the grass and bumped along with my awesome jogging stroller.

I stopped in Staples to check out these wireless doohickeys which everyone can store their stuff on in case their computers die or something. Wasn't going to haul that around with me so some other time. After leaving Staples I meandered across the street to see if I could find a cheese/vege slicer thingie which I coveted at a friends home. No dice. Left there and proceeded to Old Navy to see if I could find something which might work as a "bath robe" since I have gotten rid of all of my grandma ones. Bath one sells bathrobes so light weight hoodies will have to do. That is hoody....not plural. I guess if I have to leave the house in the hurry, no one would know it is my bathrobe so it works in a dual purpose sort of way. I think I could get away with hanging out in it and my pjs which people wear in public anyway, all day and not even worry if someone were to stop by.

From Old Navy I trudged with Evan to Target to buy him some grub as I forgot to bring any with for my evening engagement with my friends to watch "The King's Speach" again and have pizza. Yum. The movie can be sort of painful at times but it was really good even the second time. It might become my cult movie when the little people are sleeping as I don't think they will understand that part of the King's vocabulary isn't to be repeated in public or even in the home or....anywhere......yes. No where.....but they might hear it on the street and think there are royalty here in America.

After successfully winding my way through the most ridiculous idea of a neighborhood layout and actually not getting too lost on my way to my next destination, it occurred to me while walking (with blistering feet....) that a sad sign of spring is the smell of fertilizer on lawns. Yuck. I looked a lot like a bag lady too as I had a few bags with me from Old Navy and can call me the Bag Lady now. I felt sort of an odd kinship with Hobos as I walked along and wondered if I could ever get used to this sort of life. Probably not.

My evening with Evan's Godparents was fun of course. I forgot extra clothes for Evan for the return trip (his is the King of Drool) so we had a contest to see who could get his clothes dried faster with a hair drier or the clothes drier. I couldn't find the adapter plug for the clothes drier which it turns out Dale took to his parents on Easter for the Crock Pot so Cindy took Evan's shirt and ran upstairs to her hair drier. Dale hollers that he found an adapter so I suggested he challenge Cindy to a dual in getting the rest of Evan's clothes dried. I think Dale won.

Cindy and I walked together on the return trip. I have no biological sisters but I do have a few sisters in Christ who I am sure are better than biological in some ways as none of them have ever yelled at me, borrowed my clothes (well, that is not entirely true), or tapped their foot impatiently outside the bathroom door. Thank you Jesus for awesome sisters in Christ.

So there you go. How is that for a days adventure???? Karin the Hobo.

My name is Erma

For the younger crowd, there was an awesome author in the seventies and eighties who had a newspaper column and published books - Erma Bombeck. I needed some lighter reading and chose "I Lost Everything in the Post-Natal Depression". This book is hilarious. The younger folk can pretend they are familiar with the cultural references to Flip Wilson and Mod Squad thanks to cable, but if you don't even have cable it is still funny. Elisabeth Taylor was very popular when this book was written if that tells you anything. She reminds me slightly of the FlyLady as she seems to live in my house or is hiding in the closet but the book is FAR more entertaining than the FlyLady. If you have never read Erma and need a pick me up, I recommend her....highly! Any of her books will do. This one just happened to be available on the Nook.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Oh to survive

I think I only covered buying a van to save on gas????? That doesn't really help that much except that the children fight over who gets to go in the new van. You know how popular you are by which van you are driving. Other ways to survive are to only invite people over for dinner who have been equally challenged holding their homes together in between services, invite some more and then not care what you are eating and where anyone might fall asleep on Easter Day in the afternoon. You could all drop in really and I wouldn't care. Bring some fresh fruit to off set the need for people to eat ham and tons of heavy sugary breads. No hard boiled eggs (first year we are not dying eggs. Let's bought, brie cheese ready and waiting, making German noodles (can't spell it), bought bunches of new sand box toys to encourage children to leave the house

Holy week survival.....don't worry what the kids wear to church. Just make sure you set aside time to cut everyone's finger nails and perhaps shave the elder boys necks and give them a trim. Um.....time to paint my own toe nails.....lie to my son about when the Easter Vigil ends......check.

Lay off the rum and coke. Yes. Need to do that. Got me through the afternoon. Good. Time to take my little snooze before the Vigil and sleep it off while listening to the whir of the daughter's sewing machine. Did my daughter have to turn on Carmina Burana.......not restful.....I think I might have to jump up and throw everyone's shoes out of the path and mop some floors?????

Surviving Holy Week and the first week of Easter

It is always an adventure to survive these few weeks. I think my husband bought the new mini-van just to reduce the gas costs to and from church. We defeated the purpose of saving gas when we left Bloomington yesterday intending to make it back to church in plenty of time. This usually takes four hours and we left at 2:30......we didn't get to the church til 7:15. There was construction, construction and bumper to bumper plus a detour which added a half an hour at least. I am sure I burned up our gas savings speeding along the northern half of our trip. I was trying to calculate how many hymns might have been sung and how far into the service they may have gotten. We made it. Phew. Only lost the first fifteen minutes. Not too shabby. We get to enjoy Anna for a few days and then she will be home for the summer in a week and half. Yay! Services morning and night this past week. Got smart and am sending Charles darling to the sunrise service in the morning and I will bring the rest of the loonies to the nine. Oh yes, the youthlings are singing at the sunrise so I can quietly get the small loons...oh....I precious darlings have matching clothes on this year. Phew!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


In real life I greatly hesitate to put my own theological anything thoughts down on public blogdom. I have these theological creepers with huge theological brains but I trust they will set me straight if I am messed in the head by that last post.

In Karin life, I get to see my eldest this weekend and can't wait. Martin is coming with me and we are staying at the State park near IU and then hopefully hitting a trail in the morning. We shall see how much energy I have to get out of bed. I am also hoping my family survives and gets to where they need to go Thursday evening and Friday morning. I don't have time to put up big placards to remind them of departure times and when to feed themselves. Sigh.

I think I need to go to my beddy bye early tonight. Too much going on for my brain to handle. It was a good day mostly otherwise. I said....too much going on. Glad Charley possesses the gift of "go to bed now children" and they magically comply and off they go.

The Passion and Confession and Absolution

Took me awhile, but I finally watched Mel Gibson's "The Passion" (too lazy to check to make sure that is the right name) with my husband and oldest boys. It was well done as I have been told. There were several things I thought the movie did well. The agony of Christ is the most obvious of course. The others were a bit more subtle but they stuck out to me.

In relation to Confession and Absolution, there were several thoughts that ran through my mind. I am not a pastor so perhaps this is not theologically correct (feel free to correct me), but I felt they portrayed Judas very well. I don't know how the rest of you have pictured Judas but the fact that he was "one of the twelve", part of that group of ordinary men who were chosen to be the twelve, was well portrayed. He falls into temptation, is bought off, and betrays his Lord with a kiss. Many other depictions I've seen of Judas in both art and on screen, he seems somehow more obviously sinister but in this rendition, he is so much like the rest of the twelve in many ways. Why else would they all have asked who was it who would betray their Lord.

So the movie very clearly depicts, after he betrays Jesus, Judas horrified at his sin. Demons literally chase him and he is tormented. He goes to the Priests and is turned away. He is turned away and left to his torment and despair. It kept going through my mind how he went to the priests and was turned away. Now his sin horrifies us all too, but I guess I am perhaps overly sensitive to fellow human suffering. We all suffer. We all have known torment for our sin. Mentally we struggle. Judas obviously was tormented and suffered the guilt of his sin. I think I doth detect the suffering of others too much at times. What did Judas really desire when he went to the Priests? He wanted his burden lifted and taken away. He could not bear his burden and so was truly driven to despair and ended his life at his own hand to end his suffering. There was no way out. The movies use of the demons chasing him and the grabbing of his head in an expression of utter despair, how death is all around him and haunts him and even the rope signifying his being driven to see death as the only way out of his despair were all clearly depicted. Sigh. All of these emotions are very well done.

So....when we go to our Pastor in our distress and in our sin for Confession and Absolution, we do not go expecting to be turned away. We go to be absolved, to be counseled and comforted by the Gospel. Christ suffered to conquer sin, death and the grave so we would not have to. He suffers with us when we suffer. We go to Confession and Absolution not to be *better* Christians, but to take comfort in the rest Jesus intends us to have. Resting is sweet. Resting in Jesus is sweetest and hearing those words of absolution is that rest in Jesus. Forgiven. He suffered that agony so we could rest and not be tormented. When we are told by our pastors not to despair and the words of the benediction are said, that is because the Pastor means it. Don't despair. Don't be tormented by your sin but receive and know the forgiveness of sin in Christ our Lord. Those are not just idle words. They do not want us to suffer as Judas suffered and countless others suffer. Pastors desire for us to know the rest that is only found in Jesus.

So......Confession and Absolution is exactly what Jesus wants for you. If you are not offered it, ask for it. Don't worry about your Pastor's feelings as that is not your problem. He is called to do it. Jesus wants you to rest in that wonderful comfort. It is just that simple. It is really the most tangible way Christ gives us besides His Holy Supper, to know and be assured of the forgiveness of sins. How sweet it is. How sweet it is.

Feel free to correct me in any of this. Smile.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Confession and Absolution

One of the best sermons ever. I have attached the link and highly recommend a listen. Confession and Absolution is one of the most important things to me and I am SO thankful Emmaus faithfully offers it. I have no profound words other than that. The sermon says it all. The message is good for Pastors and parishioners alike. The beginning was cut off a bit.

Wednesday, April 13th is the day. I am SO confused! Keep posting the wrong day. LEt me know if the link works.


Well yesterday was quite the day. I am not sure I could improve too much on a day like that. We started with Matins, docoroo appointment which ended up all good, home for a bit, my dear husband um.......went van shopping for an eight passenger and......bought one (used)!!!!! I feel spoiled rotten! I am delighted though and the kids are too. I will taking it on its maiden voyage Thursday to pick Anna up for Easter. We have already had some great fights between the kids as to who is sitting where and many mouths hanging open with extras which came with. Pinch me.

Finished the day with a Divine Service - awesome of course - greatly appreciated by this poor miserable sinner. Evan and his sweetness is the light of my life right now (no, the van does not rank) and the day ended well too. That sentence does not flow well but I don't care.

So on the van front, I know it doesn't fit all of our family but sadly in a few years it will fit everyone who will be home. It is of course white to fit in with all the rest of the white vans at Emmaus. Somehow we will attempt to keep it clean or at least cleaner than the rest of our vehicles have been. Our 15 passenger will get less use and hopefully live longer. Rust treatment is in order for that thing.

So went the day.

Monday, April 18, 2011

The Home Stretch

Unbelievably Anna will be done with her Sophomore year in a few weeks. It is the time of year I find most challenging to keep my kids going in their school work.

In the church year, this is my favorite time of year. Holy Week this week and Easter! Yay! We go to church a lot in these few weeks (every day and then some) and it is great to just revel in it. The time we are not at church we will stumble, trip, stumble trip at home. Today was certainly in the category of stumbling and tripping but no one is crying at the moment and we have a dinner plan so all is good. 15 minutes till departure. Not sure we are going to make it......better go throw some food on the big kids plates!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Taking all their clothes away

Time to begin switching the clothes out for the new season. I have taken more and more of their clothes away as winter went on to lessen their burden of clothing care and now......time to start over again. They don't need too many clothes do they? Four t shirts??? Three pairs of clothes and some church clothes? The clothing monster makes me crazy. Time to find some black garbage bags to fill up again!!!!!!

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Mornings and retirement.

Even though the rest of the day looms ahead of me, I do enjoy time with the little people. They jabber their heads off at me and are in their most cheerful state of the day. They love their baby brother Evan and play with him and tell me how much they love him. Sweet!

This morning is gorgeous outside. It is SO green and getting greener. Green gives me energy but of course is distracting too as the kids want to play around with gardening and there is still work to be done. Perhaps by the time Evan is in high school we will throw our hands up and give up on school the first of May. It is just occurring to me that this spring will be different this year! Woo hoo!!!! No baby chicks to fret and worry about. No water to haul. No lights to make sure are on. Sigh. Sweet relief! We did the animal thing and now we REST from that labor!!!! I wonder if this has crossed the kids minds. What will they do with themselves????? Maybe we will EAT the lettuce this year and not just grow it and run out of energy to go down and week the stuff and the rest of the garden. We have retired from animals!!! Happy dance.

Well, that thought should be worth something today. I will always smile quietly at all you enthusiastic farmers out there. I will cheerfully pay you for your labors. :o)

Monday, April 11, 2011

Answer to prayer

Yesterday I saw again my friend Janet for whom we have prayed for years. A year after she and her husband were married she discovered she had breast cancer. That was a long and scary ride for her but she lived and carried on. She and her husband prayed for a child and we prayed with them every day we could remember to. We prayed for other families who remained childless. Jesus answered all of those prayers. For a long time it was no and then for some they had wonderful surprises, which were not a surprise to Jesus in the form of children born to them and also families with wonderful surprises of answer to prayer in adoptions too for which we rejoiced with them all and thanked Jesus for His gift of children to them. Janet and Todd were still watching and waiting and doing their best to be patient.

One day, not too long ago, I heard that Janet and her husband were in the process of adopting. Happy day! I knew it was going to be in January. Talking to a mutual friend, close to the day of their adoption, I discovered to my horror, everyone's horror, that the day Janet went to get the crib she went to the oncologist and cancer had returned. She was not given a great prognosis. They would have to tell the birth parents. Keep praying... We prayed, everyone prayed, and... the answer was yes! The birth parents proceeded with their adopting their little baby boy.

So, I saw Janet and her husband and their little guy Stephen. He is about fifteen months now. At some point in the evening, his dad was holding him and another friend who hadn't seen Todd in a long time asked whose little guy he was holding. Todd, standing a bit taller, say, "This is MY son." Answer to prayer...

A little later Stephen decided to get a bit jealous of our little guy Evan and um...Evan's arm must have appeared a bit like a chicken leg to the small boy and on came a bite. Janet scrambled to get Stephen and apologized profusely. The thought quickly came to me and I smiled and looked at her and said, "Janet, I am just thankful you have a little someone to be embarrassed about!" Funny how I never would have thought that I would be thankful to Jesus for my son getting bit by a toddler. Answers to prayer are pretty amazing. Spending the evening with friends who have suffered many sorrows but yet we were all laughing our heads off, is just another answer to prayer in so many ways.

Janet does not share with us how she is doing as she is reveling in her little boy with her husband. We are going to get together to go garage sailing in a few weeks. She wants to look for clothes for Stephen. I'll be there with bells on, even though I will be highly selective in my own purchases! No excess stuff ya' know!

Thursday, April 7, 2011


Maple syrup season ended and bee season begins. Matthew and I took the little kids out to our other location of bees. I've been dreading that a bit as last year all of the hives died. THIS year three out of four lived. This is encouraging. This weekend I should spend some time playing with bees as that is therapeutic to me. I am not sure if it is too early to make a split but will read up on that and get back at it again. Perhaps I will even find some time to see what the condition of the honey supers are. Last year this seemed impossible with the baby and all. In some ways it seems challenging this year. Perhaps in a few years people will find me out there sweating away, playing with the bees and doing even better in the beekeeping department. I don't like being a bee haver.......

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Grandma's feather bed

Today we were all struggling to find a quiet place to give attention to individuals who needed math help and reading help etc. There were laundry baskets hanging about with clean laundry (just fold it and put it away already!) and many small children vying for my attention. I said to Martin and Benjamin, "Come on quick! Let's sneak off into my bedroom and shut the door. It will be quieter and I will be able to have you both snuggled in bed to talk to you about your school stuff." we sped to my bed.

We were making good progress. I was sharing with Martin that his lesson on Ven graphs and the like was always an annoying lesson to me when I was a kid but we had to do it anyway as they put this stuff on tests and Benjamin was reading away on the other side and Evan was drifting off to la la land. (I was thinking during the sermon this evening that if I were to live like I were dying, which we all are, I would probably grab a few kids and snuggle them up in my bed.) It was a nice quiet scene until.....we were discovered. Soon they all drifted in like something out of a story book. The lyrics to 'Grandma's feather bed' started drifting through my mind. Kids were on top of the covers and gleefully climbing under them. This is what homeschooling is all about right? I might try it again tomorrow. Perhaps they will all pass out in a nap.....or not.

I'm glad we don't have little piggies or chickens anymore.

Monday, April 4, 2011

Various stuff

I am still about the business of throwing stuff out and giving stuff away. Several "family heirlooms" have been given away after no one has used them for 20 to 40 years. No one in the future is going to use them either so off they go. It is a tiny bit cleaner in here.

School is still slow and steady. Today was interrupted with errands and sick kids. I managed five hours of sleep without interruption. That was a thrill. Evan finally slept fairly well last night.

Sometimes we get stuff done around here. Charley completed the taxes. I am pushing kids to get through their math for this year and forge ahead. I think I dream of getting more done but it seems to never happen. Some are 'ahead' and some are 'behind'.

Um......this is another boringish post. Other than sick kids and plugging along there isn't much going on. I have no deep thoughts either! Someone would have to ask a question for me to answer to come up with something I think. So deep I am.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Not doing much

Today was remarkable. Well it was mostly remarkable. The syrup season is over and it is true, the kids collected the buckets and taps (keelers and spiles). Otherwise , we enjoyed a day of little activity. I managed to do a little laundry and put some away. I checked out some prices on my wonder phone to see what to price some things on Amazon. That was very exciting. This morning we ate breakfast, cleaned it up, did a few things, catechesis and reading a book aloud to kiddos, (can't remember what else they did...) then we ate lunch. How is THAT for awesome? This afternoon the kids watched a movie and did the syrup clean up. I went on a walk with my walking buddy and Evan came with. Then.....are you ready???? We came home and I finished making dinner, our oldest son, 65 year old Jim came over, we cleaned up from dinner and......I read to the kids and......watched another movie. We must be sick.....or something. This sounds like a chapter of "Little House in the Big Woods". The kids noted that in almost every chapter the family got up in the morning and in the next paragraph they were getting ready for bed. That was our day. I can handle this awesomeness. True, someday I might need to do more laundry or clean a bit more but I will cheerfully accept some more days like this. The kicker is...Charley stayed inside most of the day and only snuck out when I fell asleep in a chair with Evan. Not too shabby.